What is/was your degree(s) in?
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25-11-2015, 10:41 AM
RE: What is/was your degree(s) in?
(25-11-2015 10:26 AM)TurkeyBurner Wrote:  
(25-11-2015 09:35 AM)goodwithoutgod Wrote:  What I have learned....college is a joke and is no indication of intelligence or capability. It is an indication of time and money spent. The certificates look pretty on the wall of our office and bring credibility to the job market, but you really learn very little. Life experience is the true university of knowledge.

That is a fairly broad brush you are painting with there. Some of us have a greater appreciation for structured learning than others. Not to mention that not all collegiate experiences are equivalent. Furthermore, there is much more to be learned in a campus environment than simply knowledge gained from the classes.

For me, college was not a joke. I took my classes seriously and I learned fundamentals that I still fall back on 20 years later to interpret and understand new technology as well as the world around me. To your point, I had classmates that also passed the same courses and have the same degree, but who learned and understood very little. The value of their degree, in my opinion, is very low compared to what I feel my degree is worth. I also had one classmate who took nearly 10 years to finally complete the program because he kept dropping or failing classes. Why? Because he was busy starting and selling businesses. He is a pretty wealthy guy now.

No doubt there is significant wisdom to be gained in the course of one's life that far exceeds what can be learned in a classroom. Indeed, there are many paths to knowledge and wisdom. However, dismissing the value of a college degree based on your personal experience is a bit myopic.

And now, I will go and hide. For I have chastised GoodWithoutGod, whom I fear and respect, and there will likely be an intellectual whipping in my future should he find me.

College isn't for everyone. You do need some sort of skill to make it in the world, however. For some that is college, for others it's the military, going to a trade school, or opening a small business, etc. I do agree that life experience is also important--coupled with a skill--it can make you highly marketable.
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25-11-2015, 10:54 AM
RE: What is/was your degree(s) in?
(25-11-2015 10:10 AM)Black Eagle Wrote:  Majors: Macro Economics and English Lit Minors: Spanish and Physics

Graduate: J.D.

I disagree with GwG. The university is the one place where you can study a subject and analyze it thoroughly with an expert standing over you to make sure you stay on track. Life experience is nice but it is slow and you can't learn differential equations through life experience.

You can learn differential equations without formal schooling, though. Mathematics in general is ideally suited for self-study because you don't need any fancy expensive lab equipment. Book, pencil, paper, and maybe a calculator, and you're all set.

I taught myself calculus from a book before I ever took it in school. And later, when I took a formal course in differential equations, it was only offered during the day, and I was working full-time during the day. So I talked the teacher into letting me study at home and just show up for exams. I got an A in that course. I did the same thing with a Physics course a year or two later (because my company sent me to England for half of the semester). I aced that one, too.
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25-11-2015, 10:59 AM (This post was last modified: 25-11-2015 11:13 AM by GirlyMan.)
RE: What is/was your degree(s) in?
BSCS w/ PHIL Minor - UMCP (magna cum laude)
MSCS w/ AI concentration - JHU (high honors)
PhD in Street Skills - Prince George County (honorary, for making it to 50 yo)

There is only one really serious philosophical question, and that is suicide. -Camus
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25-11-2015, 11:04 AM
RE: What is/was your degree(s) in?
(25-11-2015 10:54 AM)Grasshopper Wrote:  You can learn differential equations without formal schooling, though. ... I got an A in that course. I did the same thing with a Physics course a year or two later (because my company sent me to England for half of the semester). I aced that one, too.

Once I am finished desecrating the graves of Runge and Kutta with ODE graffiti I will hunt you down and waterboard you with PDEs. Angry

There is only one really serious philosophical question, and that is suicide. -Camus
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25-11-2015, 11:09 AM
RE: What is/was your degree(s) in?
(25-11-2015 08:25 AM)TurkeyBurner Wrote:  I have a BS in Electrical & Computer Engineering.

You do know that snipples have a galvanic skin response, right? I'm getting an idea for a new kinda smart shirt. Big Grin

There is only one really serious philosophical question, and that is suicide. -Camus
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25-11-2015, 11:12 AM
RE: What is/was your degree(s) in?
(25-11-2015 10:37 AM)yakherder Wrote:  Some people benefit from college, some people don't. I have an insatiable thirst for knowledge and a laser like focus for things that interest me, but way too much ADHD to sit through classes that don't. I don't just get bored. I get frustrated and restless that they're standing up there wasting my time.

You may not be able to learn everything through random life experience, but you can always pick up a textbook as a supplement and seek out your own mentors as needed without having to sit through (and pay for) four or more years of lectures, knowing full well that only some of them will be of value. Especially now, with the increasing sophistication of online tools like Khan Academy and Coursera, I can't think of any reason to even bother stepping foot in a classroom until you've already got at least the basics down like calculus and a few introductory classes, programming languages, etc. That stuff is all just as easy to learn out of class as in. But again, I suppose we've all got our own ways of learning.

Perspective is a funny thing. I didn't take a single class that I felt was a waste of my time. Many of my fellow engineering majors lamented having classes in humanities forced on them. Russian sociology? How is that going to help me as an engineer? It didn't, but it is amazing to see things going on in the world today and to at least have some understanding of behavior of people very different me and my own culture and history.

I have struggled with ADD my whole life. One thing I have learned is that more structure is better than less. I am too easily distracted by the next interesting thing. Taking a formal class helps my focus because I have made a financial commitment. Coursera is my friend. But, even there, I have to stay on the class schedule to keep focus. This is especially true where I am learning something that does not have immediate obvious return value.

Lastly, tests are amazing motivators for me. I always want to perform well and demonstrate mastery, not just pass. Self-learning, while beneficial to me, does not require me to study the same way I would for a test. Even in Coursera classes, I learn the most in the courses that require you to pass tests to continue.

Formal classes may feel like a slog at times, but in the end I always cherish the knowledge gained. Not everyone learns the same way, but college and other formal learning experiences have worked for me.

I just wanted to let you know that I love you even though you aren't naked right now. Heart
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25-11-2015, 11:18 AM
RE: What is/was your degree(s) in?
(25-11-2015 10:41 AM)TheBeardedDude Wrote:  Ph.D. (ABD) Geosciences, University of Connecticut (research on the Late Devonian mass extinctions and their causes using multiple variables. Including sedimentology and stratigraphy, paleontology, and geochemistry)

Don't let that ABD fester for too long or you'll never get rid of it. Big Grin

There is only one really serious philosophical question, and that is suicide. -Camus
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25-11-2015, 11:25 AM
RE: What is/was your degree(s) in?
Masters in Theatre Arts/Costume design.

I was a dance minor.

Went for the big money, didn't I? Laugh out load

Shakespeare's Comedy of Errors.... on Donald J. Trump:

He is deformed, crooked, old, and sere,
Ill-fac’d, worse bodied, shapeless every where;
Vicious, ungentle, foolish, blunt, unkind,
Stigmatical in making, worse in mind.
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25-11-2015, 11:25 AM
What is/was your degree(s) in?
(25-11-2015 11:18 AM)GirlyMan Wrote:  
(25-11-2015 10:41 AM)TheBeardedDude Wrote:  Ph.D. (ABD) Geosciences, University of Connecticut (research on the Late Devonian mass extinctions and their causes using multiple variables. Including sedimentology and stratigraphy, paleontology, and geochemistry)

Don't let that ABD fester for too long or you'll never get rid of it. Big Grin

I'm working on it dammit

Being nice is something stupid people do to hedge their bets
-Rick
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25-11-2015, 11:30 AM
RE: What is/was your degree(s) in?
(25-11-2015 11:12 AM)TurkeyBurner Wrote:  
(25-11-2015 10:37 AM)yakherder Wrote:  Some people benefit from college, some people don't. I have an insatiable thirst for knowledge and a laser like focus for things that interest me, but way too much ADHD to sit through classes that don't. I don't just get bored. I get frustrated and restless that they're standing up there wasting my time.

You may not be able to learn everything through random life experience, but you can always pick up a textbook as a supplement and seek out your own mentors as needed without having to sit through (and pay for) four or more years of lectures, knowing full well that only some of them will be of value. Especially now, with the increasing sophistication of online tools like Khan Academy and Coursera, I can't think of any reason to even bother stepping foot in a classroom until you've already got at least the basics down like calculus and a few introductory classes, programming languages, etc. That stuff is all just as easy to learn out of class as in. But again, I suppose we've all got our own ways of learning.

Perspective is a funny thing. I didn't take a single class that I felt was a waste of my time. Many of my fellow engineering majors lamented having classes in humanities forced on them. Russian sociology? How is that going to help me as an engineer? It didn't, but it is amazing to see things going on in the world today and to at least have some understanding of behavior of people very different me and my own culture and history.

I have struggled with ADD my whole life. One thing I have learned is that more structure is better than less. I am too easily distracted by the next interesting thing. Taking a formal class helps my focus because I have made a financial commitment. Coursera is my friend. But, even there, I have to stay on the class schedule to keep focus. This is especially true where I am learning something that does not have immediate obvious return value.

Lastly, tests are amazing motivators for me. I always want to perform well and demonstrate mastery, not just pass. Self-learning, while beneficial to me, does not require me to study the same way I would for a test. Even in Coursera classes, I learn the most in the courses that require you to pass tests to continue.

Formal classes may feel like a slog at times, but in the end I always cherish the knowledge gained. Not everyone learns the same way, but college and other formal learning experiences have worked for me.

I don't think my classes were a waste of time either, even though I am now taking a different career path and won't be needing any of the degrees I have. Hobo I do like that I have my degrees to fall back on though. Thumbsup

YH and GWG have a lot of training from the military. It is the equivalent of a 4 year degree or more, imo. When my sister and brother went into the military, recruiters tried to get me to join too. My sister (who is a major tomboy) said my time in the military would be like scenes from Private Benjamin, so I chose college instead. Wink Although, now that I'm into backpacking and learning about outdoor survival--I kinda wish I had some of that type of training.
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